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Pinebrook, fire officials help residents prepare homes ahead of wildfire season

Smoke above the Pinebrook neighborhood from the Parleys Canyon fire in Aug. 2021.
Utah Fire Info
Smoke above the Pinebrook neighborhood from the Parleys Canyon fire in Aug. 2021.

The Pinebrook Fire Safety Committee is hosting a fire safety event to help prepare Summit County for wildfire season.

Saturday, May 4, is National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day and the Pinebrook Fire Safety Committee is inviting the Summit County community to an event to learn about wildfire safety.

The free event is at Pinebrook Park from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. It starts with with a 45-minute hike led by Brad Washa, a Pinebrook resident and assistant professor of wildland fire science at Utah State University. During the hike along Two Mile Creek, Washa will show community members forest health concerns and work done by the fire safety committee to mitigate fire hazards.

After the hike at 11 a.m., speakers will discuss wildfire prevention. Park City Fire Marshal Mike Owens said the fire district will discuss its chipping program and how it can help community members prepare for wildfires, like checking around a home for risks.

“We point out things that you can do specific to your home, that will harden your home or make it stronger, more resilient against a wildfire,” he said.

Local arborists, tree service companies and foresters will also set up information tables at the event. One will feature information on firewise landscaping, a type of landscape design providing the best chance for a building to survive a wildfire. Owens said one firewise landscaping tip is to keep grass in lawns short.

“There are great lists out there of plants that are harder to catch on fire,” he said. “And those are the types of plants that you want around your house.”

Another table will provide information on wildfire insurance. Pinebrook Fire Safety Committee Co-Chair David Geffen said Pinebrook is lucky not many insurance companies have discontinued wildfire coverage in the area. He said the committee’s firewise certification helps.

“The good work we're doing in the neighborhood hopefully helps to the extent we can publicize it and ensure the insurance industry understands people up in Park City are taking this risk seriously and doing what they can to make our community safer,” Geffen said.

The Green Chili House Food Truck will be at the event to provide a free lunch to Pinebrook residents. Local businesses also donated gift certificates for an opportunity drawing.